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Incontinence Pads for Beds: Layers Work Best

incontinence pads for beds

Make incontinence cleanup easier and faster

If your older adult experiences incontinence, you might spend a lot of time cleaning up and deodorizing after leaks or accidents – which can still happen even if they wear incontinence briefs.

Save time, energy, and replacement costs by preparing the bed using tried-and-true layering tips and highly-rated incontinence pads for beds, both reusable and disposable.

These techniques make cleanup easier and faster and reduce the chances of permanent soiling or stains. After all, replacing a ruined mattress or bed linens is expensive.

Plus, reducing the effect of leaks or accidents helps both you and your older adult get a good night’s sleep.

Here, we explain exactly how to layer incontinence products to protect beds and pillows.

And to reduce leaks at the source, we also suggest some incontinence briefs and pads with heavy absorbency for better overnight protection.


Strategic layers of incontinence pads provide waterproof protection

Multiple layers and a combination of incontinence products are the key here. Sometimes, waterproof mattress covers and bed protector pads can’t always do the job on their own.

Plus, once urine soaks into the mattress or pillows, it can be difficult to get out and the smell can linger. That’s why it’s best to prevent them from getting wet in the first place.

If your mattress is already soiled, clean and deodorize it with a diluted vinegar spray or a urine neutralizing product like Odoban before wrapping it up.

You’ll need to wrap the mattress in multiple layers to keep it from getting soiled.

This way, some of the outer layers might get wet, but at least those will be easily washable and will protect the layers underneath.

Protect the bed by layering incontinence bed pads, in this order

  1. Start with a cleaned and deodorized mattress and encase it in a zippered, waterproof mattress cover like this one.

  2. Then, put a fitted sheet style waterproof mattress cover like this one on top of the zippered cover.

  3. Optional: Add another fitted sheet style waterproof mattress on top of the first (repeating step 2). This adds protection for larger accidents.

  4. Next, put on a regular fitted sheet. Sheets with deeper pockets (like these) can help if the layers are getting thick.

  5. Then, put one or two layers of a waterproof absorbent pad like this one (or this large one) on top of the fitted sheet, depending on their needs. Your older adult will sleep on top of these pads.

  6. For even faster cleanup, you can also use a combination of washable bed pads and a top layer of disposable bed pads (like these options or these super-absorbent options).

  7. Blankets Option 1: Instead of one thick comforter, try multiple layers of thinner blankets and/or large towels. These will be much easier to wash and dry than a thick comforter.

  8. Blankets Option 2: Consider trying a waterproof duvet cover. Here are some options, but none of them have enough customer reviews to know if they’re generally effective.

  9. Blankets Option 3: Waterproof flat sheets aren’t available in the U.S. , but do a great job of protecting blankets from getting wet (we did find some in Australia). This sheet would go on top of your older adult and their blankets would go on top of the sheet.

  10. A DIY solution is to get a waterproof fitted sheet in a larger size and cut the elastic edges off to make it into a flat sheet. For a no-sew method to hem the edges, try iron-on adhesive tape.


Protect pillows by layering incontinence products

  1. Put a waterproof cover on the pillow like this one.

  2. Optional: Use multiple layers of waterproof pillow covers if your older adult is very likely to get their pillow wet.

  3. Lastly, put a regular pillowcase on top.

Reduce leaks with maximum absorbency incontinence products

For nighttime, using incontinence briefs that are super absorbent or those specifically made with overnight absorbency helps to reduce leaks and absorb more if there is an accident.

The overall goal is to find a brief that has heavy absorbency, fits well to prevent leaks, and has maximum comfort for better sleep.

This may take some experimenting with different brands, styles, and absorbencies.

If you’re struggling with overnight protection, consider trying specialty brands which aren’t always available in major drugstores. For example, NorthShore Care has styles with very heavy absorbency and a wide range of sizes from Small to 3XL.

Additional brands to try include Dry Direct, LivDry, Tranquility, Tena, MoliCare, and Seni Super Quadro.

You may also consider adding a booster pad for increased overnight protection (like these options or this option). A booster pad isn’t the same as a “regular” incontinence pad or liner. They’re meant to go inside an incontinence brief, adding another absorbent layer.

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By DailyCaring Editorial Team Image: Welcome Mobility

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